tv Mc Laughlin Group PBS July 7, 2013 3:30pm-4:01pm PDT
from washington the mclaughlin group, the american original for over three decades, the sharpest minds, best sources, hardest talk. issue 1 nuclear independence. >> july 4th america again celebrates its independence, the 237th time that it has done so. for more than a century britain had imposed on the u.s. a monarch cal rule. since then the u.s. has emerged as the world ears leading superpower. that superpower status rests on our economy, arguably the best in the world and our military strength including our arsenal of nuclear weaponry. this was addressed by president obama on his late june trip to germany. as the leader of the free world, mr. obama renewed a call
to work towards ridding the world of nuclear bombs. >> i determined that we can ensure the security of america and our allies and maintain a strong and credible strategic deterrent while reducing deployed strategic nuclear weapons by up to 1/3. and i intend to seek negotiated cuts with russia to move beyond cold war nuclear postures. >> this emphasis is where the president has already had so success. in 2010 president obama signed the new start agreement with then russian president limiting the number of deployed warheads it 1550 by the year 2018. three years later president obama chose berlin, the epicenter of the cold war standoff between east and west
to propose further cuts, another 1/3. the russian reaction to mr. obama's proposal was restrained "we cannot negotiate with the united states indefinitely on the reduction and limitation of nuclear weapons bilaterally while a number of other countries continue to expand their nuclear and missile potential. the process of disarmament should become multilateral." so said russia's deputy foreign minister. the principal other country that concerns russia is china. russia and china share a lengthy and porous border. the two countries fought a border war with one another 52 years ago while the u.s. believes china has as low as 250 nuclear warheads, the russians believe the chinese nuclear arsenal numbers 1800
warheads. >> question should president obama have given his nuclear arms reduction speech in beijing ins(ead@of berlin? mort. >> it would have helped, i think, but it's clearly we've had some good experience more in reducing r nuclear warheads and in their -- also going along with that reduction, putin has no inntion of doing that at this stage of the@game cause he some level on both borders, a on the chinese side a b on the western side. somehow ornother we have to get china involved in this dialogue if we're going to be able to make any progress and reduce the weapons as he describes by another third. that's jt going@to be a sine qua non of any future progress. >> are you saying putin is raid of chinese aggression? >> i don'tknow that he's afraid of our aggression. there are political benefits that co. to him and other countries to have that nuclear capability. >> i think the president's
initiative is aimed at the overkill capacity. there are more than 17,000 nuclear weapons in the world spread over nine countries. the u.s. has over 7,000 of them. the president has the authority he can cut independently. republican presidents george h. w. bush, george w. bush both reduced the u.s. s(ockpile. it's expensive to mainta. so this is really going at the loose kes in russia as well. and with richard lugar no longer in the senate it's very difficult. >> a united states senator. >> right. it's very difficult to get anything through the u.s. senate. so the president is acting unilaterally here, and i think the russians with this jus( a@stalling tactic.@ o,the ssiansn't@ke the fact we're building sel. th el tha('sa reasonnot
kis(anwha('shappening there, what's happing other parts of the world in north korea. you want to talk about@recing nuclear weapons,i think the other cotries is a smart one. >> not only is lugar gone but senator john kyle is also gone, and he's the one that pushed -- he's the republican that pushed the start treaty through last time. arizona senator replaced by jeff flake. so that means he can't really go to congress with anything. anything he can do is going to have to be done unilaterally by the president. and if he wants to do it like eleanor said there are plenty of things he can do. he can reduce hundreds to thousands of nuclear weapons. he can take tactical weapons out of europe. do we really need three different ways to destroy the world. maybe we could just go down to two. >> right. yeah. and he has the backing of the military and the establishment of both parties, former republican leaders. it doesn't make sense to have all of these weapons roaming around that are -- they're very expensive to maintain, 60 or
$70 million a year. >> god givepolitical@cover. there's no doubt if he did it wod be lot of politil tax on that. >> both bushes did it. i don't remember y attacks th. >> he's in a very different position than either president bush, so i think that's his motivation. >> is there any possibility that the nuclear weapons could >> in terms oflikechemical warfarex things like that? >> no, they are obsolete. >> no, i don't mean obsolete in the sense that they're dated. i mean that they lose their capacity to work. >> no, they are. the tactical nuclear weapons in europe, right now basically don't work. >> why? why? >> they're in shelves. they're technologically obsolete. they're decades old. they need to be -- if we wanted them to work, we would have to invest millions to refurbish them. >> face sill material, if they're not discharged they lose their fissile material and then what happens? >> they become useless. you just start guarding them
and putting them on shelves and they become a political symbol. >> they have no power. >> right. >> it's a legacy issue for the president as so many things are. when he was first elected to the senate, he went on a trip to russia and the former soviet union countries with richard lunar, lugar and he w how loosely guarded this stuff was and he came back feeling like something has to be done about it. you can laugh but he got his nobel peace prize because he made that speech in prague in 2009. >> yes, so now he's back in germany justifying the prize? the prize came within two weeks after he was elected president; correct? not elected but took office. >> well, the spring of '09. i don't think it was two weeks. it was a couple of months. >> it was surprising. >> it was based on the expectations as what he@could do as president. hedge himself pretty ham strung with a senate he's not going to be able to cooperate with. >> having received the nobel
peace prize prematurely. >> he cares about the issue john. that's a more sincere@way officing what you just sd. >> (here are various options. he's a politician. >> he's a child of the 80s. that's what the liberals cared about in the 80s. >> that's a point well taken. >> okay. the obama nuclear free world vision. >> we will work to build support in the united states to ratify the comprehensive nuclear test ban treat treaty tha( ends producti ofissile f"an, indi, isel, kis(an,@ruia, email@example.com. and possibly but doubtfully north korea. the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty, the ctbt would do exactly what its name states, ban nuclear tests. the u.s. signed the nuclear
test ban treaty in 1996, 17 years ago, but the u.s. congress has not yet ratified it, and beyond the ctbt the president also wants a worldwide treaty to end the production of fissile materials for nuclear weapons. if he could achieve any of these nuclear steps, president obama could possibly cement his legacy as the nuclear nonproliferation president. >> question, if president obama can achieve a test ban and a treaty to end the production of fissile material, is itthe equivalent of nuclear disarmament i@ask@you susan. everybody els like they're losing 'ome(hing. kis(an wants it tobeapplied@ to the@cuent stockpile ich@ it's going to feel like it's left vulnerable. i just don't see it's going
happen. >> the treaty is still being negotiated. but the comprehensive test ban treaty was killed in the u.s. senate when clinton was president. we've ha moratorium anyway. we don't@test. so basically we're respecting that treaty, and republicans are not going to rati it, and they're making a mistake because if a country can't test a weapon, they therefore can't have a weapon, and so it's good policy. >> are nuclear weapons are old and they're losing or they've lost their fissile capability, the chinese nuclear apons are@ what does that tell you? this is a little macabre to call it good news. >> basement. macabre, you mean sad? or fearful? >> both. you don't need a lot of nuclear weaponry to destroy the world. we have enough, whether it's old or rusty or whether we need
to knock the dust off it. >> what makes you so sure. >> we're the united states of america. i'm confident in our ability to destroy the worl >> we have a lot of nuclear weapons in our arsenals, and they have a delivery immense damage. you call it destruction. call it immense damage. same if we got into that kind of a war. that's what we're all trying to avoid. >> how many nuclear weapons would it take to make the world, the whole planet an armageddon. >> i would say it would be a lot -- it would be a lot less than 1500 that we have. >> that's the question. i'm cutting you off. exit question, should president obama reset his nuclear arms cut proposal from bilateral with the u.s. and russia acting alone to multilateral involving all of the declared nuclear powers including possibly improbably north korea. do you followme? >> i follow you. i think you're not going very far so i can follow you for the
next three steps john. >> there's no way that's going to happen. there's nopolitical way you can imagine this happening. however much this would@be wonderful. >> geany doesn't have it. >> no. >> is it prohibited. >> i don't know whether it's pro i object haded under german law. >> their own constitution probably limits how militarily they can get involved. >> what's the answer to my question,@get everyone on board. >> politics and diplomacy is the art of the possible, and the excess weapons that we're talking about are in the u.s. and in the former soviet union, and if you're going to start talking about denying other countries, limiting other countries' stockpiles that's a whole other conversation. >> i think it would be probably dismissed on the bass of the improbability of getting the exactitude of examination to verify they have in fact -- didn't we encounter this with russia? >> there's no way this is going to happen at this stage of the game. certainly not in the case of china for example. china@is a power that just going to give itup.@ at's -- period.
north kor -- >> it is. >> evebody gets in the act together. we talked about@russia and the@ ited s(ates, d they canot even -- we're not even gog to get@the bilateral. it's too hard. because everybody's feeling threatened so they need to keep their nuclear stockpiles. >> what would be wrong with wouldn't that be a contribution to his legacy. let's all jump in the tank together. >> i'd say so. but american presidents hate to be left at the alter. it diminishes their power every time that they've -- they feel like it diminishes their power. i don't think it would, but he's not going to propose something until he thinks he'll get a yes. >> does the un have any role to play? theoretilly that would be the way to handle these sorts of problems. >> he's getting enough pushback for what he's put on the table. let's see if he can get that. i think it's within reach. >> it's a great idea but impossible dream. issue 2, obesity the disease.
>> well, we know as obesity researchers that obesity is a disease, but the fact that the american medical association has recognized it will have tremendous impact on legislation in washington with insurance companies. it carries a lot of weight. >> the medical community is relieved by the recent ruling of the influential and prestigious ama, the american medical association that declared obesity a disease. a. m. a. represents more doctors than any other association. here's their mid-june language "recognizing obesity as a disease will help change the way the medical community tackles this complex issue that affects approximately one in three americans." okay. that's over 78 million fat adult americans. who are these overweight people?
answer a person who has a body mass index b. m. i. of 30 or higher compared to a normal b. m. i. of 18.5 to this .9. memorize these stats, bmi does not measure body fat directly but is a reliable method to determine body fatness calculated from the ratio of a person's height to a person's weigh$. so using that measure, 35% of u.s. adults, 1/3 are considered obese, and 17% of children are obese. obesity has long been associated with health risks including heart disease, type 2 diabetic, 2 2 diabetes stroke and various cancers. the door is open to insurance companies enable them to more accurately reimburse for health problems associated with obesity, this disease designation for obesity by the
way reaches into addictions that are now treated as diseases like alcoholism. the obesity action coalition in tampa says that the a. m. a. designation obesity is a disease "puts obesity on the same path as treatments for addictions to alcohol or tobacco and mental health problems such as depression." so far so good, but not everyone is happy with calling obesity a disease or that 1/3 of the u.s. population is diseased. the naaf as in frank, a, the national association to advance fat acceptance spokeswoman peggy howell says this "we don't see ourselves as diseased. to label a whole segment of society as diseased without any knowledge of their health is
unacceptable. it directly fuels discrimination." >> question, what are the social costs of severe obe'ity@ and what did you thk of that lady's argument? >> i think her argument is the least of e problemshere. if y're declaring i( a increase the pre tag for americans. you know, it'sgoing@to inea health@insurance cos(s because we're going tobe payi for lifestyle choices@ it also going to cost,@u disality more easily ung that's going to really increase the cost of that absolutely exploding cost of that program which is already skyrocketing. toead people get more treatment toreduceit. >> what's that? >> bariatric surgery where surgery to reduce your appetite d se weight. but it's not for everybody. that's becoming more of a thing to reduce obesity. if it's going to make peop reduce their weit, th you can see some -- something positive about i(.
way to really explode the cost of health care for really what's become@a lifestyle choice. i mean people who smoke, are going tocall smokg a disease too? >> the costs are exploding already. >> she's made an excellent point about bariatric surgery, but it's expensive, and insurance companies have been reluctant, i believe, to undertake the cost of bariatric surgery. should that be changed, and if so, does the government play a role in having it changed? it's a sease. >> iom wondering if bariatric surgery is what they're mi at. that probay lygog to include a fraction of the people. ve f pple@get@that suery. on the whole when you consider 35% of the population is obese. >> the governor of new jersey apparently just had bariatric surgery; is that right? >> the governor has yes. and he needed it. >> is that what it's called whatever he got. >> yes, whatever he got. >> a lap nd, what's a lap band? >> they band off part of your stomach so you get full quicker. >> i think it's removed.
>> first of all the a. m. a. has no official power to make anybody do anything. i think it does put some pressure on insurance companies to recognize that overweight is not simply a product of lack of will power or a lifestyle choice. but it's a lot more -- it's a lot more complicated than we we know. we're just really learning about this. and i would -- you know, it's a chicken and egg thin the health care costs are exploding because of the@health problems related with obesity, and so you want to treat them in order to reduce those weights. so i'm all for treating people seriously and taki this condition seriously. >> what's the nation institute of health? >> let me just say this,. >> did i give you just a figure he, $12,000 to $35,000 for the kind of surgery we're talking about. >> right. >> and insurance companies have >> they do cover some. they do cover some of it, yes, they do. >> fat --obesity s exploded
over the last several decades, changed. people eat more food, they eat they don't have as much exercise. they don't continue exercise. they don't walk to places. they get transported one way or another. it's a change of lifestyle. it's not a disease. a lot of people yield to it. >> yield to what, the change? right a lot of people do that. a lot people are eating the kind of fo that accumulate the calories in your body. fat is the result of all of that. >> i'm not satisfied with this because i think we're talking about stigma here. and my exit question focuses on that. does the designation of obesity as a disease stigmatize obesity or does it de-stigmatize fatness? >> i think itde-stigmatizes it on some level because people it's not my fault. it's not my lifestyle. this disease. continue eating excessively@and
not@exercising. we'll pay for your problem now because it's a disease. it's not your fault. >> we also created your problem in this sense. there is no fundamental difference between the will pour that exists among people today and people 50 years ago. it's the same human race. it's the same american people, but all of a sudden obesity s soared. now@what'sappened? ingly disagree with you. i think will power. >> increased portion sizes. it has increased. >> you have some physical appearance, the impression you're young. >> have you ever heard of weight watchers? >> i've heard of weight watchers. >> it works for some people. they teach you to count calories, and calories are ingredient to the overweight issue. and it works. >> for some people. >> almost all. i would say almost all. men and women? >> right. >> but look at obesity among under 10-year-olds. are we saying that people 10 and under are so radically
different than they were 30 years ago that these 9-year- olds don't have will power. >> what's the point? >> the point is something has changed in society. >> blame the food. >> well, society is more sedentary. >> we watch a lot of tv. >> they ay computer all day. >> issue 3, warrantless dna swabs. >> the 4th amendment protects u.s. citizens from quote unquote unreasonable searches and seizures. this means that the fbi or the police cannot search someone for evidence of a crime without that person being suspected of the crime. within the framework of quote unquote probable cause, but in an unusual five to four split the supreme court ruled that police can take a sample of your dna if you have been arrested for a serious crime. and if the dna matches dna found in other crime scenes it
could implicate you. the case of maryland versus king. it upholds the conviction of alonzo king junior. he was found guilty of a 2003 major assault on the eastern shore of maryland. a dna sample was taken when he was arrested on another crime in 2009. an assault charge unrelated to the 2003 2003 rape crime. the dna matched. the supreme court ruling treats cheek swabs of an arrestee's dna like a standardbooking procedure, like fringing. anthony kennedy was joined by john robert effort junior, clash thomas and samuel eely toe. antonin scalia joined the three women on the court to disagree with the ruling. scalia and justices ruth bader ginsburg, sonia sotomayor and eleanor kagan ruled against the
here's what scalia said about his descent "the court has cast aside a bedrock rule of our 4 4th amendment law that the government may not search its citizens for evidence of crime unless there is a reasonable cause to believe that such evidence will be found. question. will the supreme court decision prompt a national standard for the collection of dna? >> eventually it probably will, and here'swhat you need to know to see which direction the country's going. in 2009 e supreme court@ruled thatsomebody con.icted of a crime@does not have the right to he access to their own dna even if it would prove them innocent. so we had a bill of rights set up to protect people. instead@peopledon't have access to their own dna but the government does have the access >> what's dna? >> well, it's your internal fingprint in some way. >> what does it stand for? dna. >> oh, boy. >> come on, struggle. >> i don't know.@
>> nucleicacid. i know that. >> that's the best we can do here? >> looks like it. >> does it give your whole genetic material as does nothing else. it should not be compared to a fingerprint, which is relatively primitive as compared to the detail that exists in the dna that can be pro pro cured from the swabbing of a cheek. >> it can tell you all sorts of stuff. >> and your father's and mother's stuff and their predecesso. >> it can tell you what diseases y're@predisposed@to. >> that's a matter of permanent record if it's taken. please contue. >> i generally side with the liberal members of the court. on this one it was the conservative majority but joined by steven briar and i buy his thinking that this is the court catching up with the modern world, just as the fingerprints i'm sure some people thought that was invasive. this is how we identify people, and in the particular case in maryland, that i discovered that he was guilty of a rain
rape that he had done several years before. so it had a good outcome. i don't think you can just argue the case to get to that good outcome. this is not invasive at all, and more than half the states already have this -- are already doing this. so to answer the question i think we will have a national standard at some point. >> should any collection ofdna be first preded byvoluntary permission to do it? in other rds you understand? >> i understand ctactually. i don't think it has to be voluntary for it to@be ableto be used.@ >> to@be taken and used. >> oh, really. >> yes, absolutely. >> i don't support a warrant for every time you're going to collect dna. >> i'm ying voluntary on the part of the rson from whom it's taken, yes no. >> i think it shld be i don't likeit i. also don't like blood and breathalyzer. it's very invasive. >> go ahead. >> we three are correct. >> out of time, happy 4th 4th
>> we have, in washington today, a government that is absolutely incapable of resolving the problems that are confronting the nation. what has happened here is it really goes back to the money that has become the overriding and the driving factor in politics. >> the slush of money that have come in and the fact that you can now have unlimited amounts of dollars flow in to campaigns without any even disclosure. the citizens united supreme court case, which basically took off all the campaign finance restrictions. i got to hope and pray that the supreme court realized they muffed on that one. >> it used to be that those of us in the middle who prided